Golite’s Reed Pants are one of the lightest waterproof pants available today. At 6.4 oz for a men’s large, they are significantly lighter than both the old and new versions of Marmot Precips that weigh in at 9 oz. or more depending on size. These pants also compress down to the size of an apple and are easy to jam into the back pocket or webbing of your pack for easy access.
The Reed Pants are made using a laminate fabric called Alchemy that “features a tightly woven ripstop nylon face fabric with DWR finish, a micro-porous hydrophilic PU coating and 1/2-layer ceramide ink printing to enhance moisture vapor transmission and prevent clamminess.”
I’ve worn my pair for 5 years in all 4 seasons while backpacking and snowshoeing and have found them to be rugged and comfortable in the pouring rain and the freezing cold, as an outer wind and shell layer. The pants however are quite simple and lack some convenience features to save weight. For example, the legs are tapered and don’t have any ankle zips, so if you need to shed a layer, you have take off your boots (this year’s model has corrected that deficiency and added ankle zips -but there probably is a slight weight penalty.) The waist is elasticized allowing you to easily tuck in and adjust to multiple layers. There is no front zipper.
I highly recommend these pants even though they lack some of the conveniences found in heavier alternatives.
Disclosure: The author owns this product and purchased it using their own funds.
Was wearing them today (new style with zips), in a comparison test against my ol’Red Ledge Thunderlights. Needless to say, I love these pants ! Absurdly light, trim cut, breathable, with little effort I could get them on and off over my Roclite 390s
I couldn't agree more. I first bought the Precips but then upgraded to the lighter Golite Reed pants. They are very breathable and extremely comfortable. You can hike in the rain for days wearing these – and I've done it. In fact, I've given up on wearing gaiters to protect against mud getting into my boots and making my socks wet because when I wear these pants they do the same job.
I have the older model without the zips, so I sewed in about 14" zip up from the cuffs. In summer, if I need long pants, I use the Reeds. If it is cold I wear 'em to bed. Excellent gear.
An excellent, low-weight alternative to zippers that can often be retrofitted to pants without side zips is to (carefully) open up the side seam and sew in narrow velcro. Velcro is light and never jams and compared to a zipper, is easy to retrofit. It holds fine even in Alaskan brush, in my experience.